“How long can you stay awake?” is a question you probably don’t want to try to answer at home. But in 1964, a high schooler broke that record for science. Randy Gardner stayed awake for 264.4 hours (just a bit more than 11 days) for a science fair, and had his experiment observed by Dr. William Dement, a Stanford sleep researcher. The symptoms they found were fairly predictable—irritability, poor motor control, lack of focus, short term memory loss—but the symptoms only tell half the story.
For the first time, scientists have directly controlled brain cells using sound waves, in a tiny laboratory worm.
They used ultrasound to trigger activity in specific neurons, causing the worms to change direction.
As well as requiring a particular gene to be expressed in the brain cells, the technique bathes the animals in tiny bubbles to amplify the sound waves. These complications temper the technique's promise for controlling brain activity in a non-invasive way.
It’s official: the universe is weird. Our everyday experience tells us that distant objects cannot influence each other, and don’t disappear just because no one is looking at them. Even Albert Einstein was dead against such ideas because they clashed so badly with our views of the real world.
Sleeping in the lateral, or side position, as compared to sleeping on one’s back or stomach, may more effectively remove brain waste, and could reduce the chances of developing Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and other neurological diseases, according to researchers at Stony Brook University.
The U.S. Defense Department recently began testing a laser that might someday be affixed to drones to knock incoming missiles out of the sky.
Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford, nominated by the Obama administration to replace Army Gen. Martin Dempsey as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said he agrees with Navy Adm. William Gortney, head of U.S. Northern Command, on the need for the military to develop ways to thwart ballistic missiles earlier in flight, possibly with lasers.